A new painting

After a long pause, caused by a water damage in my little atelier and due to lots of renovation work, I started painting again.

This time, I layered oil paints over ash and washed them away again and again to create subtle effects. It’s a play of appearing and disappearing, of strong presence and nebulous absence. Like memories, they come and go, sometimes they are very clear and sometimes you wondering if an event really happened or if it is just in your imagination.

Plastering a wall with stucco

Many years ago, when we restored our house, I plastered my very first walls ever in our living room. I just came back from a one week training course where I learned the basics of wall plastering with lime, sand and marble powder. These walls were in a very rough condition, we had removed the old plaster, closed some holes with natural stones and here I came, ready to build up all the layers necessary before the final one could be done. Back then, I used sieved sand with lime and troweled it off. I did not know that the trowel should be made of a special steel so that no traces of troweling will be visible afterwards. My trowel wasn’t such a one and when the walls were try, lots of greyish traces became visible. It didn’t bother us very much but during the last years I became more Continue reading “Plastering a wall with stucco”

Casein-Lime Paint

It`s already seven years since we constructed a new spiral staircase for our house. Hagen built a wooden skeleton and I put gypsum on it, layer by layer, until it looked like an elegant, old staircase. The final surface was plastered with a mix of lime, gypsum, pigments and protected with savon noir.
One can certainly imagine that time left some signs of wear on the surface, scratches and stains from the daily use. It also had, from the beginning of her life, some fine slopes and dales, resulting from my first attempts of working with fine plaster. Every day I saw it and thought: I can do it better now! Continue reading “Casein-Lime Paint”

Kunst & Kommerz

mohamed_hassan / Pixabay

Wie vermutlich jeder Künstler, möchte ich meine Arbeiten nicht nur zeigen, sondern auch verkaufen. Das klappt ganz gut über Ausstellungen, also offline, und manchmal eben auch online. Zu Beginn meiner Künstlerkarriere hatte ich hier einen Shop (woocommerce) integriert. Das stellte sich als ein wenig überdimensioniert heraus.
Ich hab die Erfahrung gemacht, dass die meisten Menschen Kunst nur dann online kaufen, wenn sie mich entweder kennen bzw. meine Malerei schon mal gesehen haben.
Also hab ich den Shop wieder entfernt. Ich möchte natürlich dennoch sichtbar machen, dass man meine Bilder kaufen kann.
Bisher hatte ich nur einen, relativ diskreten, Hinweis auf meiner About Page dafür. Aber es braucht schon eine gewisse Zielstrebigkeit um sich bis dahin durchzuklicken;-)
Nach vielen Diskussionen mit meinem persönlichen IT Master, haben wir uns darauf geeinigt, dass unter jedem Bild, welches verkäuflich ist, nicht nur der Preis erscheint (!) sondern auch ein Kontaktformular, welches von einem Kaufinteressenten schnell ausgefüllt und versendet werden kann.
Die E-Mail, die ich dann erhalte, enthält neben dem Titel des Bildes auch den Namen und die E-Mail Adresse des Interessenten, so dass wir nun zueinander finden und die Kaufabwicklung klären können.
In einem nächsten Schritt möchte ich nun noch auf der Portfolio Page sichtbar machen, welche Bilder käuflich sind.
Aber dafür muß ich erst einen neuen Termin bei meinem Master buchen 😉

Blue Study Series

Steadiness

Making that painting was a real struggle for me, on the one hand technically and on the other hand emotionally.
I used different blue pigments in different solvents which still reacted with each other long time after I decided the painting is ready, but not in the desired way. The components changed colours and structures and I needed to find out what happened to be able to correct it e.g. use it. Thus I tried different compositions on smaller canvas which resulted in a little series of blue-greens.

The technical exploration was fun and I learned a lot. The other side of the making was more difficult. I thought of a person close to me and to whom I am strongly tight emotionally. Our relation was not that easy over a long period, when I did not get the care I needed, when I did not understand decisions imposed on me, when I was lost and sad.
It changed over the time, as we both were able to talk to each other on equal footing.

That painting expresses all my ambivalence how I see this person: the deepness and the impenetrability, the beauty and ugly, the strengths and weaknesses, infinity and finitude, steadiness.
Hard as a rock on which you can crash, but also can provide protection.

Orchids

Undecided

In the 18th century, quinine, obtained from South America was the expensive medicine used to treat Malaria. Because of the high costs, chemists were experimenting to develop a synthetic equivalent, so did W.H.Perkin. He did not succeed in creating quinine out of coal tar but accidentally discovered the colour mauve.

I combined violet pigments with some green mineral pigments, mixed them with a light grey in cold wax and acrylic to create a more soft, subtle, undecided appearance.

Mauve was long time a colour preferred by noble women, such as Eugenie, the Empress of France and thus became very fashionable for some decades but this trend burnt quickly.
For a long time, the greyish violet was often related to old women and not popular at all.
This might change as Pantone declared ultra-violet the colour of the year 2018 and I guess, all it’s shades will become fashion again 😉

Mein Sonnenhut

Mein Sonnenhut

Vor ein paar Wochen, während einer Diskussion über Nachhaltigkeit, Sparen und Konsum, hat mich jemand gefragt, wie alt mein ältestes Kleidungsstück ist.
Damals habe ich geantwortet, dass ich mir 1994 ein Kleid gekauft habe, welches ich noch immer besitze und anziehe (ein klassisches Etuikleid und so gar nicht altmodisch).
Letztes Wochenende jedoch, hab ich ein noch viel älteres Kleidungsstück gefunden: einen Sonnenhut. Diesen Hut hat mir mein Vater aus einem Sommerkleid meiner Mutter genäht als ich so 12 -14 Jahre alt war. Weder er noch ich können uns an das genaue Jahr erinnern, aber ich mußte diesen Hut immer aufsetzen, wenn wir mit unseren Paddelbooten unterwegs waren, von wegen Sonnenstich und so. Natürlich habe ich ihn damals nur unter Protest getragen, denn ich fand ich mich damit nicht schön, im Gegenteil, der Hut war sowas von altbacken, ich hab ihn nicht wirklich gemocht.
Aber irgendwie hat er all die Jahre und viele Umzüge überlebt und seitdem wir im sonnigen Süden leben, ist er mein ständiger Begleiter am Strand geworden.
Nun ist dieser Hut schon über 40 Jahre alt und bereits letzten Sommer drohte er auseinanderzufallen. Ich wollte ihn noch ein wenig retten, aber der Stoff ist schon ziemlich morsch, die Nähte haben sich an vielen Stellen einfach aufgelöst und eine Reparatur war nicht mehr möglich.
Ich war ziemlich traurig darüber, sind doch mit diesem Hut so viele Erinnerungen verbunden, aber nun hat er als Hut ausgedient.

Letzten Sonntag hab ich ihn aufgetrennt um ihn als Vorlage für einen neuen Strandhut zu benutzen. Seine Einzelteile hab ich gut verpackt und in meiner Nähkiste verstaut. So bleibt er noch ein wenig bei mir.
Nach zwei Stunden war mein neuer Hut fertig. Und ausprobiert hab ich ihn auch schon, zwar noch nicht am Strand, aber auf unserer Terrasse 🙂

Winter

I like to experiment with different materials over and over again and try out how they react to each other. For this painting I mixed blue and white pigments with cold beeswax and acrylic, applied all in countless layers on canvas and the result fits perfectly to the time of the year.
Actually, I did not think much of winter, the painting just turned out like this. I can see some snow on top of the Canigou, about 80 kilometers away, when driving to the supermarket, and that is indubitably a beautiful view, but it’s enough winter for me 🙂

Imagine, you are walking through a snow-covered forest, it is clear, icy cold winter weather, the snow crunches under your feet, ice cones are hanging from the branches. All that I can see and feel in this painting.

Heart - Jeff Koons

Powerful Red

I finished another painting, a bit similar to the Autumn Leafs painting, but with a much clearer structure and so I think, more powerful.
Also, I used different materials: lime, marble powder and cold marble wax for a smooth structure and shellac ink for a warm subtle tone.
This time, I really wanted to get a very deep, strong red. It’s not as easy as you might think by using different shades of red pigments. Red ochre is anhydrous iron oxyde, a mineral. It comes in shades from very dark brown-red to light yellow.
These minerals tend to turn either into a brownish red or rusty tone. So I mixed them, layer by layer and added some yellow pigments.

I wrote about the meaning of red before but I would like to add some more aspects to it.
Red, is the colour of power.
Kings, cardinals and Roman generals wore red.
Did you know, that about 75% of the worlds flags contain red?
But red is also associated with blood, danger, aggression and lust. The devil wears not always Prada but red and in the middle ages it was the colour prostitutes preferred to wear, until today we call the  area were the prostitutes are presented the red – light district.

These oppositional attributes make red a tricky choice for brands.

One can say, red is the colour of life with all it’s facets: power, joy, sex, danger and death.

I hope you can see the power of life in my painting 😉

Imitated Rust, seen at ART Basel

Rust – Rost – Rouille

I always experiment with different materials and inspired by some art I saw at the ART Basel, I wanted to create artificial rust on canvas.
There are ready to buy kits for creating artificial rust, which are quite expensive and I thought, also boring to apply. I like to figured it out by myself 🙂
Obviously, I needed some fine metal shavings, which I could get from the local blacksmith. He just shook his head when I told him what I was about, I believe he thinks I am a bit crazy…
These shavings I mixed with acrylic medium to apply it on a wooden board. To activate the rust I moistened it with acid. That process I repeated several times until I got the desired result.
Between I incorporated several layers of acrylic and oil paint, and other media to create some special effects.
I learned a lot about how the different materials react to each other and now I am ready to apply this technique on canvas too.